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Chapter-10 Collection and Protection of Personal Information

  1. Not to collect personal information except in accordance with law: (1) No one except the official authorized under law or the person permitted by such official shall collect, store, protect, analyze, process or publish the personal information of any person.

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), information provided by the concerned person may be collected after obtaining his or her consent for the purpose of conducting any study, research or collection of public opinion.

(3) While collecting information pursuant to sub-section (2), it shall not be collected without fully informing him or her regarding the purpose for which the information is collected.

Explanation: When the notice about collecting data is broadcast or published through the media of mass communication by addressing the general public, such notice shall be deemed to have provided information for the purposes of this Section.

(4) While collecting information pursuant to sub-section (2), the following matters shall be clearly set out:

(a)        Time of collecting information,

(b)        Content of information,

(c)        Nature of information,

(d)       Objective of collecting information,

(e)        Method and process of testing information,

(f)        Certainty of the matter of maintaining privacy of the collected information,

(g)        Matters including the protection of the collected information.

(5) While collecting information of any person, the official authorized for collecting information pursuant to law shall have to collect it by obtaining information from the concerned person.

(6) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (5), the following person may provide the information on behalf of the following person:

(a)        In the case of the person who has not attained to the age of eighteen years or who is of unsound mind, his or her guardian or curator, provided there will be no harm to him or her when such information is so provided.

(b)        In the case of the other person, the attorney or representative authorized by him or her.

(7) Except in the following circumstance, the official authorized pursuant to sub-section (1) shall not collect personal information:

(a)       If the personal information has been collected by such official using authority under the same law under which it is collected,

(b)        If there is provision for collecting such information by such official under the prevailing law,

(c)        If it is collected in the course of investigation, prosecution of criminal offence or action under the court proceeding or enforcement of law,

(d)       If the person regarding whom any body corporate or public body collects information, holds or is about to hold any post of such a body, or if such information remain under the approved programs of such a body corporate or body.

(8) Other provisions relating to the collection, processing, analysis and use of personal information shall be as prescribed.

  1. Not to deem to be personal information: Except as otherwise provided in the prevailing law, the following information regarding the person holding a public post shall not be deemed to be his or her personal information:

(a)        The matter as to of which public body he or she is an incumbent official,

(b)        His or her post and office address, telephone number or address of electronic letter (email) through which contact may be established,

(c)        Name of the person signing any letter or document issued or written by a public body, and his or her post,

(d)       Description of job to be performed by him or her and its nature,

(e)        Matters relating to the conditions of his or her service.

  1. Protection of collected information: (1) The personal information that has been collected by any public body or remained under the responsibility or control of such a body shall be protected by such body.

(2) For the purpose of sub-section (1), the public body shall have to make appropriate arrangement against unauthorized access likely to occur to personal information, or against the possible risk of unauthorized use, change, disclosure, publication or transmission of such information.

(3) Notwithstanding anything contained elsewhere in this Section, the public body may disclose or get any personal information disclosed under the prevailing law.

  1. Not to use personal information without consent: (1) Except in the following circumstances, the personal information collected by or remained under the responsibility or control of a public body or body corporate shall not be used or given to any one without the consent of the concerned person:

(a)        It has been published or distributed for the purpose of which the personal information has been collected,

(b)        If demanded in written form, in the course of investigation or prosecution of a criminal case, by the official authorized for making such investigation or prosecution,

(c)        If an order is made by the court in the course of taking action on a sub-judice case,

(d)       If question is to be solved, when it is raised about the qualification or any other matter of the person, who is holding a public post under the prevailing law,

(e)        If the authorized official demands for any particular kind of information in written form, in order to solve the question raised on any particular matter.

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), the authorized official of the body having the responsibility for collection and protection of information may, in the following circumstances, publish, or cause to be published, any personal information for the purpose of a study or investigation for the public purpose:

(a)        If the matter about which investigation has been made cannot be fulfilled without personal identity,

(b)        If damage and loss is not caused to the concerned person while giving personal information of any matter that has been given for the purpose of investigation,

(c)        If the concerned person has consented at the time of obtaining information or any time thereafter for the public purpose.

(3) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Section, for the purpose of archives officially established by the Government of Nepal or Provincial Government, personal information may be provided, in the following circumstances:

(a)        If there is any information that does not affect negatively to the personal status, professional or personal privacy of the concerned person,

(b)        If such information is provided for the historical research or collection or accumulation of historical facts or information,

(c)        If it is personal information of any person thirty years or more than thirty years has passed after the death of such person.

                        Provided that such information shall not be provided if he or she gets insulted or it causes damage and loss or insulation in any manner to his or her heir or children, as a result of the publicity of personal information of such person.

(d)       If such information has been recorded since one hundred years or more than that period.

  1. Not to process sensitive information: (1) A public body shall not process, or cause to be processed, any sensitive personal information remained under its responsibility or control.

(2) For the purposes of sub-section (1), the following information shall be deemed to be sensitive information of the concerned person:

(a)        His or her caste, ethnicity or origin,

(b)        Political affiliation,

(c)        Religious faith or belief,

(d)       Physical or mental health or condition,

(e)        Sexual orientation or event relating to sexual life,

(f)        Details relating to property.

(3) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (2), such information may be processed in the following circumstances:

(a)        In the course of alleviation of disease, public health protection, disease identification, health treatment, management of health institution and providing health service by the licensed doctor in the concerned subject or by the health worker under direction of the licensed doctor, without insulting or letting the concerned person feel inferior.

(b)        If the concerned person has published the information himself or herself.

  1. Application may be made to correct information: (1) If any person thinks that any information related to him or her which is remained under the responsibility, protection or control of any public body is wrong or is not based on the fact, he or she may, at any time, make an application to the concerned public body in the prescribed form to correct such information.

Provided that if he or she has already taken any advantage or facility on the basis of such information, application may not be made to correct such information.

(2) While making an application pursuant to sub-section (1), he or she shall have to submit the details of why such information has been wrong or has not been based on the fact, and also the evidence to justify the fact or details claimed by him or her.

(3) If an application is made pursuant to sub-section (1) and the public body thinks that it is necessary to correct such information as prescribed by making inquiry, it may correct such information by making necessary improvement.